Asian Recipes

Asian Recipes Blog

The Unrivaled Practical Guide for Asian Cooking

About Kiwifruit, a nutritious fruit

Kiwi is an ideal fruit to pack: juicy, not bulky, and nutritious. In fact, kiwi is often regarded as one of the most nutritious fruits, followed by papaya, mango, and orange. Two kiwis contain more potassium than a banana, as much fiber as a grapefruit, and twice as much vitamin C as an orange.

To peel kiwifruit, simply cut a slice from both ends of the kiwi and remove the peel in strips running from end to end, using a small knife or vegetable peeler. Or, after cutting off the ends, hold the kiwi in your hand and insert a dinnerware tablespoon into one end of the kiwi, right next to the skin. Rotate the spoon around the fruit just under the skin. The fruit will pop right out of its skin.

To ripen Kiwifruit faster, place the kiwi in a brown bag with an apple or a banana. Seal and let stand at room temperature overnight. Ethylene gas emitted by apples and bananas helps other fruits ripen more quickly.

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10:22:18 on 07/25/09 by Webmaster - Quick Cooking Tips -

Using Honey or Nectar

A thick, luscious sweetener, honey is the product of bees, made from the nectar they collect as they travel among various flowers.

Choosing honey
The flavor and color of honey is determined by the type of blossom from which the nectar is collected. Generally, the darker the color, the stronger the flavor. Commercial honey producers usually blend different varieties of honeys for a consistent color and flavor. Wildflower honeys are not blended but are made when beekeepers position their hives so that the bees collect nectar from just a single variety of flower. These honeys tend to have the most pronounced flavors.

Storing honey
Store honey in an airtight container at room temperature. When stored at too cold a temperature, honey may crystallize.

To substitute honey for sugar
For general cooking, substitute 1 cup honey for 1 1/4 cups sugar and reduce the liquid in the recipe by 1/4 cup. For baking, use the same ratios, but replace no more than half the amount of sugar in the recipe. Also, add 1/8 teaspoon baking soda to the dry ingredients if the recipe has no baking soda, baking powder, or other acid (such as citrus, yogurt, or sour cream). Reduce the oven temperature by 25F to prevent over-browning. For jams, jellies, or candies, use the same ratios as for general cooking, but slightly increase the cooking temperature to allow the extra liquid to evaporate.

To prevent honey from crystallizing
Store the honey in a dark, dry place at room temperature. However, if it has crystallized, you can liquefy it by putting the container in a pot of hot water until the crystals dissolve. Or microwave the honey container on medium power for 5 seconds if cloudy or 10 seconds if crystallized solid. Make sure that the container doesn't have any metal parts, and loosen or remove the top to allow steam to escape.

To prevent honey from sticking to a measuring cup or spoon
Coat the utensil with cooking spray or dip it in oil before measuring. Likewise, to avoid sticky lids on honey jars, wipe the lid and rim of the jar clean with a hot, damp cloth. Then spray some cooking spray on both the lid threads and the jar rim.

Fascinating facts about honey
To make a pound of honey, worker bees must forage nectar from millions of flowers. To communicate the location of nectar sources the bees perform several different and distinct dances.

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11:49:04 on 07/07/09 by Webmaster - Quick Cooking Tips -


Also known as filberts, hazelnuts have a distinctively sweet, nutty flavor. The nickname "filbert" comes from the feast day of Saint Philibert (August 22), the day on which filberts are said to be ready for picking from the hedgerows where they grow in England.

To roast and peel hazelnuts, place them on a baking sheet and toast at 350F until golden beneath the skin, about 12 minutes, shaking the pan once or twice. While the nuts are still hot, place them on a clean towel or cloth and rub to remove the skin (it's okay if some bits of skin remain). Another way to remove the skins is to boil the nuts before you toast them. Combine 3 cups water and 3 tablespoons baking soda in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the hazelnuts and boil 3 minutes. Drain in a sieve and rinse under cold water. The water will end up a murky mess, but the skins will vanish. Pat the skinned nuts dry, then toast them at 350F until golden, 10 to 12 minutes.

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15:14:52 on 07/04/09 by Webmaster - Quick Cooking Tips -